"Look Who’s Back: The Hollywood Renaissance & the Blacklist" film season invites you to re-think the youth-orientated image of the Hollywood renaissance, suggesting that we should not overlook the vital contribution of a group of middle-aged, liberal-minded, formerly blacklisted creatives.
Season Curator Andy Willis (Professor of Film Studies at the University of Salford and Senior Visiting Curator at HOME in Manchester) has provided exclusive video introductions for this and all screenings in the season at Riverside, giving you vita insights into the thinking behind the season and a rationale for the choice of films included, as well as those left out.
Following the assassination of Dr Martin Luther King, Cleveland’s black community is on a knife-edge, wondering who, if anyone, can be trusted.
Set in the period directly following the assassination of Dr Martin Luther King, Jules Dassin collaborated with the black actors and activists Ruby Dee and Julian Mayfield on a script that situates the action in the city’s black power movement. The urgency of the film’s politics saw Paramount attempt to stifle its production and blunt its message, while the FBI coerced crew members to act as informers.
Having made his name in Hollywood with the taut dramas Brute Force and The Naked City, director Jules Dassin was blacklisted for his activism and communist sympathies in the early 1950s. Following a number of years based in Europe where he made the classic heist film Rififi, he returned to the USA and the Paramount studio for this Cleveland set reworking of Liam O'Flaherty’s The Informer, a novel memorably adapted for the screen by John Ford in 1935.